Lecture notes - S umma ry 1 Plesiadapforms Plesiadapiformes...

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Summary 1: Plesiadapforms Plesiadapiformes: “dental primates” (= as in extant primates, have low-cusped cheek teeth, upper molar sides straightened up, lower molar paraconids more lingually placed, talonid at least as long as trigonid, trigonid does not tower over talonid, cristid obliqua on lower molars); otherwise skeletally primitive (e.g. lack postorbital bar, have fissured claws on digits, some lack grasping hands and feet (= lack opposable thumbs and big toes); united as a group by possession of enlarged pair of lower (and sometimes also upper) anterior teeth; primarily Paleocene, but some taxa (e.g. Phenacolemur ) persist into early Oligocene; known from deposits in North American and Europe (= Holarctic distribution). Plesiadapidae: type genus, Plesiadapis ; cat sized; reduced number of premolars. Carpolestidae: probably sister group of Plesiadapidae; mouse sized; derived in compressed, bladelike lower posterior premolar, and enlarged, multicusped upper last and penultimate premolars; species form morphocline; apparently had grasping hands and feet. Paromomyidae: traditionally thought to be most primitive plesiadapiforms; mouse to cat sized taxa; Phenacolemur (cat sized) very derived in lacking premolars, having elongate lower anterior teeth, diminished, peripherally placed molar cusps, and broad, shallow molar basins. Picrodontidae: first thought to be fruit-eating bats because of diminished, peripherally placed molar cusps and broad, very shallow molar basins; mouse sized; probably related to Phenacolemur .
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